Responding to SunLife’s recent Cost of Dying research, which suggested that the basic cost of a funeral has risen by 8.3% to £8,802, Co-op Funeralcare said it has worked hard this year to make funeral costs more affordable and transparent.
In February, the funeral plan provider launched an improved version of its Simple Funeral at a reduced price of £1,995, exclusive of third-party costs. The move, which cuts the cost by around 7% or £140, on average, was the first in a series of measures to tackle funeral affordability. It also included new measures such as an enhanced coffin and extended hours of support for the bereaved.
In July, Co-op Funeralcare signed Fair Funerals’ new enhanced pledge, which requires funeral directors to help people find funerals within their budget by displaying the full price of affordable options both online and in their funeral homes. The pledge also calls for prices displayed to include average third-party costs such as burial and cremation fees, a key component of overall funeral costs.
The company’s managing director, Richard Lancaster, said: “We recognise that financing a funeral can be difficult and with a range of measures already launched, we remain focused on playing our part to tackle the issue of funeral affordability. In seeking to address this we reduced the cost of our most affordable funeral option by 7% earlier this year, saving families over £700 in comparison to average funeral costs.
“Further measures announced this year have seen us become the first business to sign Fair Funerals new pledge to tackle funeral poverty. We have also relaunched our funeral planning range, making it more accessible and affordable for families to budget gradually for funeral costs.
“We recognise that there’s more to be done, and across the industry we have a responsibility to ensure that quality funerals remain both accessible and affordable.”